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i spent a great deal of time covering over my career. they made a point that they enjoy the post presidency but wanted to serve. to your point, they said that's their biggest challenges, months from now when we in our business moved on to other stories, they need to keep the world's focus on raising the money and doing the rebuilding. two very interesting politicians, incredibly different, brought together in a unique and odd partnership now, but a good cause. >> as politics intrudes on this story, seeing them together as they point $out shows the country coming together. thanks very much, john. i'm john king and this is "state of the union." -- captions by vitac -- six government officials, politicians and analysts have had their say, including two u.s. officials leading the recovery efforts in haiti, two former presidents of the united states, bill clinton and george w. bush. we've watched the sunday shows
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so you don't have to. we'll break it all down with james carvel and mary madeline and the best political team on television. "state of the union" sound of sunday for january 17th. president obama's point man for the humanitarian crisis acknowledges complaints from search and rescue teams and medical organizations saying they can't get clooerns to fly in. dr. rah jooef shaw says balancing the need for boots on the ground with the dire shortage of food, water and medicine. >> we have 30 teams from around the world on the ground, approximately 30 teams. each of those teams is 70-plus individuals. they have dogs and assets and specialized equipment. they work around the clock. our teams from the u.s. were the first teams to get in. they set aup center that allowed the others to know where to go
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and work in a more coordinated way. you always want more and we have sa number of teechls on standby in the united states. we were told by the haitian government that we need to balance the degree of that versus food and rations. >> the army general lead together response says things are getting better by the day and says he can't put a timeline on the american deployment to haiti. >> we're going to be here as long as we are needed. what i have on the ground right now is a thousand, approximately a thousand military personnel. i have more coming today, two more companies out of the 82nd airborne division. in the coming days i'll have marines coming off the baton and it will have a marine landing battalion which will have critical enables to clear roads. >> on all the news shows this sunday, a remarkable site. former presidents george w. bush
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and bill clinton side by side launching a new effort to help the people of haiti. >> one of the things i am concerned about is on these -- during these crises all kinds of fake charities spring up that take advantage of people's good will. we're safe haven. we will make sure money is accounted for and there's transparency and properly spent. >> i would define success as setting up a network quickly to get the food, water, medicine and security and information people need. and then as quickly as possible, resuming the path they were on before the earthquake to build a strong modern country. i think they can do it. i agree with you. woint feel successful if all we do is get them back to where they were the day before the earthquake. >> haiti isn't the president's only worry this sunday. he heads to massachusetts where democrats are worried about lose together senate seat long held by edward kenti.
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republicans smell a major upset and say in any eent have the tight race sends a national message. >> it's an important thing to remember, though, this is a referendum on the national health care bill which is democrats in secret are trying to work out now. they have arrogantly ignored american public opinion all the way to this point, and they're trying to get their members to continue to ignore public opinion one more time. >> as you can see, we've been watching all the other sunday shows so maybe you don't have to. joining me now in washington where you can only find them right here together on "state of the union" james carvel and mary madeline. welcome. congratulations on the saints going to the nfc championships. >> i take back everything i ever said about reggie bush. i really apologize reggie, you were great yesterday. i want to start on a serious
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note. i'll hold up the front page of the papers, "the new york times" this morning, every newspaper across the country dealing with haiti crisis. officials strain to dibt aid to haiti. that's the take in "the new york times." you saw the two former presidents, bill clinton and george w. bush coming together to raise money for this cause, reprise of what bill clinton and george h.w. bush did after the tsunami in south asia. we'll get to politics in a moment. assess the moment, two people who moved back to new orleans after katrina to make a statement of your own. >> one thing i want to say is the sense that katrina hit new orleans, when katrina happened, there was a lot of attention and a lot of things and everybody went on to something else and nothing happened after that. thaels not true. a lot has happened in new orleans. this city is much further along today than it was three years ago. i think that's very important for people to remember. certainly there's going to be a time when we, cnn primarily,
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leaves haiti. we've done a sterling job of covering that. if we just go back to the way we were the day before the earthquake, that would be insufficient. this san opportunity to help the haitians build an even better country. i think that's very important. it's important for people to know new orleans has made enormous progress even though the cameras left. >> which, by the way, cnn still has a bureau there and goes down on a regular basis and chart the progress. i want to pick up on something else both thements referenced which goes to this point, after the cameras lead, the rebuilding, the healing goes on. 80% of haitians are catholic. they lost their cathedral, all the parish churches. their priests, nine seminary ans. we're talking about catholic relief are not doing the rebuilding and infrastructure, they'll be doing the spiritual healing that needs to undergird
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the physical healing going on. >> one point on that, about 93% of all the money goes to catholic charities actually goes to the people in need. they're well positioned to deliver that kind of aid down there. >> one of the things, if you go to, we've vetted a lot of charities. the clinton bush haiti fund is what the two presidents are doing. if you're having a question, if somebody calls or sends you a letter s that legitimate, there are places to look to vet those charities. both of you have worked closely with presidents who have dealt with this before. i went to haiti in 1994 with the military when president clinton in those days restored the aristide government to power. at that moment we heard a lot of what we're hearing now, we can't just deal with the immediate challenge. somewhere to make haiti a viable, productive country. yet, the day before the earthquake, 80% of its people lived in poverty, 56% of them lived in abject poverty, meaning
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they earn less than a dollar a day. you mentioned the new orleans experience. will this get the world's attention? this isn't poverty, it's dysfunctional government and governments that have poured millions in foreign aid in and you don't see much of a result. >> this does give us an opportunity, a word one is loathed to use relative to a tragedy, what happened in katrina is that as hard as it is for cultures to change, they can change after a tragedy of this magnitude. we do not use our aid dollars wisely or productively relative to pov verpity eradication. we don't even do it well here. one of the things we found in katrina, again, silver lining opportunity, is when you're starting from scratch, you can make great progress. our charter schools are leading the country in closing the gap. if there is an opportunity to try anew, to have a laboratory, to adjust how we adjust poverty aid, this is it.
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we should look knew at it. just giving money won't change the culture and improve the future. >> the slave revolt in 1791, success. over throw of an exist pg colonial government in the new world. i've run across haitians, they're a very proud people. yeah. we can certainly hope because what they were doing obviously wasn't working very well. president clinton had long, emotional attachment to haiti and the haitian people. i'm glad to see he's back down there. hopefully something -- they do -- they're very proud people with a colorful history. maybe things will get better. >> let's talk about the remarkable moment. it is a tragedy like this that brought the two former presidents back in the white house. i went over to interview them and watch this event. it's quite a scene. it reminds you when you see the current president walk out of the oval office with two when
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who spent eight years living in that building. when i was sitting with george w. bush and bill clinton, one of the things inevitably, mary, even close friends of yours have said, isn't this ironic that george w. bush who suffered such a political price for the government's response to katrina, the first time he's merges after a year of the obama administration where he has deliberately kept a low profile is to take the lead role in responding to a natural disaster. i put to president bush the question, did you give president obama any advice based on your experience in katrina. >> i think once you've been president you shouldn't gratuitously offer advice to your successor. if somebody asks what you think, you tell them. otherwise you show up to help. >> people love to point fingers. what people should focus on in katrina is how the american
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people responded to help a n neighbor in need. whether it be the tsunami, the earthquake in pakistan or the tornadoes that hit during my presidency, there was always an outpouring of support. all i want to do and bill wants to do is to be a part, to lend our hand. >> do you know, it was not pleasant certainly. it's always painful when things things turn political. they've already turned political. we were pummeled by katrina. both presidents 41, 42, 43, they understand that, to separate the politics from what they can do to help. i love the dynamic from an historical perspective. daddy bush, poppy bush and step-brother clinton during work in the sue snam many recovery. now two brothers during this recovery. it's nice when the club is used for such a purpose.
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>> talk about that. you guys have unique perspective having worked so closely with presidents, having spent time around the oval office, it is a unique club. i was struck in the rose garp den when president obama was thanking them. he said we were talking in the back about what to do. in the back is one of the most sacred place ins the democracy. talk about the uniqueness of that. >> president you go in there and tell him such and up. you would sit outside the thing, get in there and go how are you doing toe day, sir? how is everything going? you're completely -- one of the problems with that oval office is for anybody, no matter who you are, people say you have to be able to speak the truth, the power, that is much easier said than done. somehow or another, is everything fine and it's like, whoa, man.
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it does have an intimidating presence. but at the same token, it's a very kind of interesting place, the history, anybody is cognizant or aware of that the president is aware of it. >> above and beyond the presidencies and it's refreshing to see them come together t. world gets to see anew what they know. but the way americans hell and the service people overnight are bringing relief, bringing food, bringing medicine and making it better, it's what america does. >> have you talked to george w. bush much in the past year? it's the first time i've seen him. you're in the map room, a his tore torque room in the white house. he said i don't miss the lime light. off camera he was his great joking self. the two of them, the experience
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as governors makes them difference. >> that's a good point. if you've been a governor, you have a different perspective on how to act. they're working hard on the library. laura bush is working on her projects. 42 and 43 are doing other activities together. what they said is true, they have a lovely home there. there is life beyond back there, the back room. >> will this slowly bring him back into the public spotlight or will he pick and choose his moments? >> i can't speak for him on that. i don't see any headline rush to want to get back into this -- particular these politics. >> president clinton, understand that clinton global initiative and all that, they're having a lot of things to deliver something like one-third of all the pediatric aids medication in the world. that ear on a hamster wheel. they're moving all the time. this haiti thing is one more time. ki see those guys saying, oh, god, they never get the chance to stop.
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in some ways it was easier when they were in the white house. >> interesting, as we elect younger presidents, we have younger former presidents. these guys have years ahead of them when they leave the white house. when we come back, mary noted there have been politics already in the wake of the haiti earthquake. we'll discuss that and a big consequential senate race in massachusetts when we come back. my mother has it, and now i have it. so even though i tried to keep my bones strong, it wasn't enough. now, once-monthly bonivais . it didn't just stop my bone loss. boniva worked with my body to stop and reverse my bone loss. and studies show, after one year on boniva, nine out of ten women stopped and reversed theirs, too. (announcer) don't take boniva if you have low blood calcium, severe kidney disease, or can't sit or stand for at least one hour. follow dosing instructions carefully. stop taking boniva and tell your doctor if you have difficult or painful swallowing, chest pain or severe or continuing heartburn, as these may be signs of serious upper digestive problems.
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we're back with james carville and mary madeline. mary noted it is perhaps inevitable in these days of 24-hour cable and polarized politics that somebody makes politics of every situation, even the tragedy in haiti.
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within hours of the earthquake, as we were trying to assess how many killed, what are needs, we hear things like this from the left. >> reminded of what health care reform really means by an awful message of nightmare rish reality from a place, a place this time not so very far away. >> somehow there from the left linking haiti to the health care debate here in united states. then we hear this from the right. >> yes, i think in the haiti earthquake, ladies and gentlemen, the words of rom emanuel, we have another kras sis simply too good to waste. that will play right into obama's hands, humanitarian, compassionate. they'll use this to burnish their, shall we say, credibility with the black community in the both light skinned and dark skinned black community in this country. >> i sat down yesterday with two
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presidents who know quite a bit about polarized politics, bill clinton and george w. bush. i ran those remarks by them. and they said this? >> they should keep politics out of haiti. >> i think when people see us together, they know we have differences, even though we're friends, and what i- the only political thing i hope comes out of this is that people keep their differences of conviction, but they treat their neighbors as friends. >> why can't we go 48 hours after a tragedy without somebody trying to connect the dots to something perhaps you can't connect to dots to? >> because we live in a political world. i just want to say rush limbaugh, his philanthropic endeavors are legendary, gives more in a year than most of his opponents can give in a lifetime. he has political impact that exceeds that. >> if you are such a giving person, why give that up for your critics? do you agree with him?
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>> he's on for 15 hours a week. i'm sure he talked about other things. please stop giggling about this. the notion that i- it's hard for conservatives to extricate politics from that one. katrina was used and continues to be used as a political football. could we? should we? maybe yes. politics is human nature. it's always going to be attached to it. to the extent we can have politics and we can continue our humanitarian effort, you know, we can walk and chew gum in this country. >> first of all, at the absolute danger of sounding like a corporate suck-up, i was proud of cnn. i think our network -- i've got to say this. anderson and sanjay gupta. we were the go-to network. we were there. this was a very, very proud time to be affiliated with cnn, and i mean that.
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secondly, you're right. it looks like there could be some kind of thing -- most people's thing is not political. rush says we shouldn't send government aid there. any american would feel pride with the helicopters giving water to these people. at some point maybe people look at something and look at something entirely differently. some people ask me does rush really mean that or is that just a show. >> if they ever, ever were able to quote rush in context or not distort what he was saying -- that robert gibbs, the president's press secretary day after day, event after event stays on the world's greatest bully pulpit and distorts what rush limbaugh has to say, it's the president of the united states versus rush lum bau. once again, james distorted what they said. that's what they do. that's what you guys do to be able to debate with rush. >> we just showed the clip. he says what he says.
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he likes saying it. what i would like to know, what people really want to know? does he believe we shouldn't be sending water there? >> did he say that? >> he said we shouldn't say government aid. he said we should send private aid. >> he didn't say we shouldn't send water there. as you take issue with rush, i just from my proud position in the middle, what about trying to connect this to the health care debate? >> i think that anderson and sanjay gupta, i'd much rather be w a network of anderson and sanjay than someone who says this has something to do with the health care debate. >> this does have something to do with the health care debate. this is the "washington examiner." the president of the united states will go up to washington.
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stark choice, brown-coakley. this is ted kennedy's seat in one of the bluest states in the united states of america, james carville. i gon got an e-mail from a democratic operative up there that said, quote, we are cooked. are the republicans a little known state senator going to take ted kennedy's seat and if so dramatically complicate the president's effort for health care reform? >> i was involved in one of these things in 1991 in pennsylvania. it could happen. if it does happen, the last place i'd want to be is at the wednesday morning staff meeting in the white house. look, we have a country of 10% unemployment, a lot of anger out there. i think the president, the new abc poll is at 53. they lost a bunch of seats in 1982. i remind people we won't win three elections in a row. >> if the issue is obama and health care in the race, would you send the president of the united states up there on the final sunday or keep him out of
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snit. >> got to send him up there. by the way, if some way this things turns around, i talked to people this morning, and people in the white house this morning, yes, it's a very serious situation. i think more people think we're going to lose than win. there's a slight bit of sense that maybe this thing could come together at the end. >> i want you to come in. listen to a little bit of this from mitch mcconnell who can barely contain his agree that you have a competitive race in massachusetts on the issue of health care. >> we know we'll have the close election for the united states senate because people in massachusetts don't want this health care bill to pass. >> it's about the 60th vote for health care, but also about an early test of the mood in this midterm election year. >> they once said of mike tyson, he hits you hard he changes the way you taste. if we win a seat in a state that's 12% republican on the
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signature issue of the obama agenda, health care, this will change the way politics tastes. even if we don't win -- if we win, it will be apocalyptic for the democrats. that we got this close is nothing short of cataclysmic. this is health care. it's not something you said. it's not the kennedy seat. the arrogance of jam pg down the nation's throat something that two-thirds of them don't want -- not only do two-thirds oppose health care, they intensely oppose it. we're jamming it through paternalistically and say they'll like it after it's in place. that sense of entitlement, that arrogance. kennedy's seat, it's the people's seat, the people's government. this race is 'em mattic of everything people don't like about the fundamental transformation agenda of this administration. >> let me ask you a question, james carville. >> let's let the election happen
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and everybody in massachusetts, my home state, democrat, republican, independent, everybody should get out and vote. long-time democratic strategist, if paul kirk, the interim senator right now in that seat, if brown, the republican, wins and wins by a convincing margin and they try and hurry up and pass health care before they swear the new senator in, does paul kirk owe the democrats his vote or the people of massachusetts respect for their decision? >> the legally installed senator from massachusetts until such time as the new person takes over. would he take a lot of heat, would the democrats take a lot of heat? yes. it's a political calculation they have to make. >> what should i do, vote yes. >> as long as you're there, you'll take a lot of heat. >> more bad advice from carville f. they slow-walk the certification and warp speed the vote, that is it. that is it. we will win the house for sure and probably take over this --
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>> they've already won two. let's wait and see what happens. >> good advice. we'll share that advice. a lot of friends at home in massachusetts and family members who get to vote in this race. it's an interesting time in massachuset massachusetts. thank you james and mary. up next, more "sound of sunday." introducing fast crystal packs. a new way from alka-seltzer plus to... get cold and flu relief in a taste-free, fizz-free powder. alka-seltzer plus.
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i'm john king and this is "state of the union." rescue crew ins haiti are
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finding more people trapped alive under mounds of rubble five days after the earthquake hit. today a new york rescue team pulled out two men and a girl who were pinned under a collapsed grocery store. aid continues to arrive there. the secretary general of the united nations is surveying the damage today. in iraq today, saddam hussein's cousin was sentenced to death for a poisoned gas attack in 1998 that killed thousands of kurds. his execution has been delayed for political reasons. president obama and the first lady are attend ag church service at this hour. the president is expected to make remarks shortly. we'll carry those live. up next, the best political team on television, including my interview with bill clinton and george w. bush. [ woman ] ring ring. progresso.
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morning because my back hurt so bad.
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joining me in washington, joe johns, ed henry and dan that bash. let's start with the response to the hurricane. this is why haiti matters, by barack obama, a cover story for "newsweek" magazine, the president writing an essay on why haiti matters. you see the earthquake devastation here. obviously shh th is an urgent humanitarian effort. ed henry, they seem acute lay aware that people are watching. the president was in this meeting, he took this call, he dispatched this person. listen to rajiv shah, just installed, barely on the job. he has to deal with this challenge. he's quick to give the boss credit. >> the president immediately after this happened pulled the cabinet together oopsz and ordered a swift, aggressive and comprehensive and coordinated response, and that's what we've
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been in the process of doing. our goal and our metric of success is to do more every single day, exponentially more in terms of the delivery services, delivery of commodities, as we open up the routes, get greater transport and logistical capabilities, secure a working relationship with the range of partners -- >> first and foremost is the challenge. the devastation, humanitarian challenge. i don't want to make any bones questioning that. they seem also acutely aware politically. >> yes, beyond change, of course, one of the other big issues this president ran on was competence that had not been on display. they alleged with katrina, the war on iraq, mistakes, et cetera. the government had to be not necessarily bigger. we can debate whether it has gotten bigger because it clearly has, but it had to be more efficient. that's one of the things that barack obama promised. when you talk to top white house aides, they say they learned lessons, want to be all over
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this. it's a neighbor and they want to help. secondly i would compare it back to what happened on christmas day with the unexpected terror incident. they were caught perhaps a little flat-footed, faced a lot of criticism, were maybe slow to react. they were quick to turn it around and say we're all over it. they wanted to be all over this. >> i think you really got to the heart of it when you were asking president george w. bush about the fact that right now politically in this country anybody who has even looked at a poll or talked to anybody who could potentially vote knows that there's incredible distrust when it comes to big institutions. this is a chance, a horrible, horrible, reason, but a chance for the obama administration to show that the government can work. of course, as you said, it was the ultimate irony that you were talking to george w. bush about that. >> it's also very important for this administration and the country to realize what could happen if they're not on top of this. you have security issues on the
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ground which are tremendous there. not just with the dominican republic, but the fact that people can come to the united states. we know the experience with the mary elitos coming from cuba, the experience of the haitian boat people oovps. if we get a mass migration of people in this kind of trouble, the obama administration could really end up struggling with some very difficult issues. >> it's a great point. you see the powerful pictures out of haiti. you also see a powerful image in washington that i think is a reminder of the gravity of this and maybe the new model. let's show our viewers the pictures. when president obama woukd out of the oval office with two gentlemen who worked out of that office eight years apiece. this appears to be, dana, the new model, in the sense the current president turning to the former presidents. you sat down with bill clinton and george h.w. bush just after the tsunami. i sat down with bill clinton and george w. bush after the hurricane. whoever is in the hoefl office seems this is the way to, a,
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help raise money, b, perhaps insulate yourself late bit, too. >> no question. it also -- the fact they have even the opportunity to do that is pretty remarkable. the fact we have so many former presidents who are so young and so active that they're able to form this club, and it is a club, and to use them to show it's not just about me, this is not a partisan thing, george w. bush after katrina, it took a while for him to call on his father and president clinton to do this. president obama is using bush's playbook which i'm sure they don't want to hear at the white house. >> we have seen a lot of bill clinton since he left the white house. he has the clinton foundation. he's active politically as well. george w. bush has largely disappeared for the last year by choice. he e has chosen not to talk about his successor and not do too much public speaking. in the course of the interview
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yesterday he made light of that that, yes, he was happy to be back in the white house, but -- >> i frankly don't miss the lime light. i'm glad to help out. but there's life after the presidency, is what i've learned. i'm going to live it to the fullest. this is part of living it to the fullest, to help other people. >> he has always been, like him or dislike him politically, very comfortable in his skin. it was interesting to see -- looked a little older, looked quite fit. he was relaxed in the chair. ed, you covered him for a bit. i frankly don't miss the lime light. i think i take him at his word. >> i do as well. what a dramatic difference from his vice president. dick cheney has been out there. dick cheney's daughter has been out here, pushing hard against this administration. it's very clear that george w. bush will not say it publicly but disagrees vehemently with his vice president in terms of getting out there and staying in the lime light. there's another benefit that he's eventually going to have a memoir coming out.
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keeping yourself out of the lime light and flooding it will probably sell a few more books, too. the other thing that comes to mind is the juxtaposition of these three presidentless. you see george w. bush and the unpopularity he walked out with. you look at barack obama and see how his approvals have tanked. you say being ppt is a tough job. you look at bill clinton, a president who sent the military in 1994 to haiti, and now you see a completely different set of challenges for barack obama dealing with the very same country. it's kind of fascinating watching that interview. >> president bush said all they talked about was a briefing of haiti. i'm not sure i believe that. they like to keep the confidence of whapsz in the oval office. these men have a unique idea on terrorism and afghanistan, a tragedy in haiti. those conversation haves to be believable. >> it's a freet when you see the
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president of the united states, and having covered clinton and bush form a long time, it was a treat to see both of them again. when we come back from a break, i'm pick up on this point. when the interview was over, president bush jumped up to his feet, gave president clinton a little elbow and said ask him about massachusetts. why? because the republicans think they might be able to win in a democratic state. we'll pick up there when we come back. compared to aleve. choose aleve, it just makes sense. just two aleve have the strength to relieve arthritis pain all day. it's my dry skin, and it's deep down uncomfortable. [ female announcer ] new neutrogena moisture wrap body lotion goes deep to heal dry skin at the source. the breakthrough formula wraps and seals more hydration deep inside skin, so after 12 hours, skin's condition is improved 2x more than eucerin original. now i can heal on a deeper level. beautiful. [ female announcer ] new moisture wrap body lotion. neutrogena skin care.
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we're back with cnn's joe johns, ed henry and dana bash. the president of the united states will head to massachusetts to campaign in this race. to win for the seat once held by the late ed wartd m. kennedy.
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it is viewed as as to-up. the republicans believe they have the momentum in one of the bluest of blue states. everyone watching. before we get to massachusetts, our latest national numbers, cnn opinion research corporation poll registered voters choice for congress, 48% say they plan on voting right now for republicans. 48 '45% democrat. back in november those numbers were a little more than flipped. 50% for the democrats in november, only 44%. so republicans nationally have momentum. they believe they have momentum in massachusetts which is one reason the president of the united states is trying to urge people in massachusetts to vote for the democrat, martha coakley. >> we know where martha coakley stands. she eem be your voice and my ally which is why the opponents of change are pouring money into your state. they believe by defeating martha and replacing ted kennedy with her republican opponent they'll be in a position to tie up the senate and prevent a vote on
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health insurance reform, financial reform and other issues so important to working families of massachusetts and the nation. >> a lot of hyperbole. the republicans believe if they win this race, they can tie up the senate, prevent a vote on health care reform. happens to be a fact, right? >> happens to be a true fact, as they say. the democratic leadership has been at the white house. they've already been working breakneck speed to try to find a solution to health care and to come to a deal so they can push it through quickly because, frankly, health care has gone on too long politically, never mind massachusetts. but massachusetts even in the past -- we've been talking among ourselves over the past several days the dynamic and the atmosphere and the fear that has now really swept through the democratic leadership and especially people who are thinking about, oh, wow, how do we deal with health care, is remarkable. i've been talking to people this morning, and they say, look, if the reality is they have a
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republican from massachusetts and they have now 59 seats in the democratic party, there is a very likely possibility -- i was told by one person who is focusing on this -- that health care could die, that the options are so limited, if you go through many of the options, it's little sausage making this morning, but it is possible that that could happen. >> in terms of that fear, i was told very reliably that a couple of the president's advisors have said they think coakley will lose. it may be about scare together base to turn out, she's goings down. the way i'm hearing it, there's genuine fear in the white house that she's going to lose. that's going to have draw malt tick implicationless, not just on health care but beyond. anything else the president wants without 60 votes, i'm told there's a conference call on thursday night, big democratic donors, people from the white house and the done nars were screaming the white house had to get more involved. the next day they announced the president is going to
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massachusetts. >> i heard barney frank, the congressman we all know from massachusetts who really knows massachusetts politics like the back of his hand has said health care is in real trouble if martha said health care is in real trouble if martha coakley loses. the environment, there are a lot of factors here. one of the factors is just trying to fill the shoes of edward kennedy. when you have a giant like that walking out the door, sometimes people don't get that enthused, that inspired about the next person down the line. i'm also told she hasn't helped herself. there are some real questions whether she is a strong candidate. so, there is a lot involved there just besides say health care. >> the republican scott brown is running a campaign and mitt romney when he ran for governor. two republicans who were successful in a democratic state by saying, enough of them. time for something different. an arrogance to the democratic party. as we watch massachusetts play
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out, without a doubt, if the republican wins, a huge deal. but even just a close race, mitch mcconnell says sends a message. >> the important thing to remember, though, this is, in fact, a referendum on the national health care bill which the democrats in secret are trying to work out now. they have arrogantly ignored american opinion to this point and try to get their members to ignore american opinion one more time. >> it is such, if not there haiti, we were spending this day talking about one year from the obama inauguration and what a change from a president near 80% and a democratic party with big majorities and tons of energy to a republican party looking at 2010 and saying bring it on. >> the president is doubling down, too. now, he's going to be there on the ground today. democrats will be able to crow if he helps martha coakley pull it out she still has staying
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power despite all this pushing. >> no question, they would not be near the situation in the state of massachusetts, i can't emphasize that enough that a democrat could lose, but talking to people on the ground that i know that i have been talking to one of the big issues is her and the knives are out for her specifically. they feel like she is a bad candidate and i just want to say one thing she has said in the past couple of days she said that curt schilling is a yankees' fan. i am just simply married to a die-hard red sox fan and i'm not trying to represent a whole state of them in the senate and i even know that. >> the yankees are back. >> curt schilling, for people who may not know, a former player for the red sox is going to campaign for scott brown. but as a massachusetts boy, i know you are making calls up there, what are you hearing. >> i got an e-mail that said last night, we are cooked. remarkably close race and, again, in a state, the dna of
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massachusetts is to vote democratic but it has done this before when voters are upset. unenrolled voters in massachusetts than there are democrats or republicans. i should bring in, maybe next week we should bring in six king siblings in massachusetts who get to vote in this election. i don't get to vote in this election, but there are six kings who do and i'll do a focus group up there. >> what is the message here? if it's a nationalized election, is the predz making the right call to go or does that further nationalize it or do you figure no choice? >> it's fascinating, he has to go no matter what happens with coakley because if he doesn't go, he wasn't able to affect the conversation at all. it would pbe, it would look terrible if the president didn't do this especially with the 60 votes in the senate hanging in the balance. on the other side of the equation, will he get blamed or would people say it is that mid-term effect now that we're moving in that the disinfected
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voters are going to the polls. >> got to call a quick time-out because we're standing by president obama is at a church service in washington.
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you're looking there at a sunday service at the vermont baptist church in the capital. the president will speak in just a short time and when he delivers those remarks we'll bring them to you live. we should make this programming
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footnote because of that. we'll continue our conversation, we will not go to the traditional "state of the union" format at the top of the hour. we'll continue our conversation until we hear from the president of the united states. we were talking a bit before the break about health care reform and also the uniqueness of having the two former presidents come in to help president obama raise money. it is a very serious cause. they want to raise now tens of millions of dollars as much as they can to help the people of haiti and also an interesting moment to see these two men. both former governors and like more ways than many people may think. they're so different idelogically all of us sunday hosts got to interview the presidents. >> do you think of yourself now as friends? >> yeah, i do. >> me, too. >> and did you talk often? >> i don't know about often, but i called him. he didn't call me because he
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knows how busy a president is. i called him and we chatted on occasion. >> i was always pleased when he called me. i made it a practice not to call the president, i don't call president obama either. >> if you're the current president you're allowed to call the former president, but if you're the former president you can't call the current president. >> you don't talk about flight club. >> i'm not sure, you know, everyone agrees with president clinton's view of it because sometimes he's seen as meddling a little bit and he likes to stay out of the limelight and we'll see if that holds true for the next year or so. i think in fairness to them, i think for someone like president obama you can get as close to the unvarnished truth from two people like this more so than almost any other person that can advise you. they have been through this and they know about the noise from the media and from your own party's base and they know sometimes you have to make tough decisions that a lot of peopl

State of the Union With John King
CNN January 17, 2010 11:00am-12:00pm EST

News/Business. John King. Interviews and analysis.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Massachusetts 25, Haiti 25, George W. Bush 15, Clinton 9, Bill Clinton 8, United States 8, Cnn 6, Washington 6, New Orleans 4, Katrina 4, Martha Coakley 4, Mary Madeline 3, Ted Kennedy 3, Obama 3, James Carville 3, New York 3, Mitch Mcconnell 2, John King 2, Dick Cheney 2, Coakley 2
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